Monday, January 5, 2009

What To Expect In 2009

Executive Chef John Cox at El Monte Sagrado Living Resort and Spa in Taos, New Mexico, believes that consumer confidence will continue to flag through at least the middle of 2009, which will prompt diners to search out familiar and comforting dining experiences. “Expect classic dishes like tomato caprese, Caesar salad, a simple steak presentation with vegetables and mashed potatoes, and shrimp cocktail and other familiar classics to be popular, though with a sophisticated yet subtle touch from the chef,” he says. That extra touch might include the addition of an exotic salt and basil espuma – Spanish for foam – to the caprese salad or freshly grated horseradish for the shrimp cocktail. “Another catalyst for this newfound menu simplicity will be the need to offset ever higher food costs with lowered labor costs,” he continues. “Restaurants that have historically depended on large numbers of cooks to produce a relatively low number of covers will be re-evaluating their approach, searching for ways to streamline their operations.”

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